How much am I supposed to do?!

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Dad is 84 with moderate dementia (SLUMS score 13 about a year ago). He lives in his home, I just started home care 3 hours per day each weekday. My brother doesn’t think he needs it, but I like having someone there with him. You can make himself a sandwich or a bowl of cereal and will take his meds if someone reminds him 10 times. I take him to and schedule all his medical appointments, monitor his health, set up weekly med box, do his shopping, help with house care etc. Myself and the one brother take turns staying nights with him just in case he may need something in the night, falls, whatever. UNTIL tonight. He had a huge fight with my brother. He is refusing to let my brother take his handgun and secure it. My brother is rightly concerned that he will try and shoot one of us in the night due to be confused about who’s in the house. He kicked my brother out of the house and told him to not come back if he didn’t feel safe. I called to talk to him about it and he downright refuses to relinquish the gun and says I can basically screw off, he doesn’t need me or anyone else to help him and hangs up the phone. I have just spent the last four nights with him and need to be present for my husband and my home. I feel absolutely terrible but I making the decision to let him stay home alone and I’ll call him first thing tomorrow. He said that’s what he prefers, but it makes me nervous. I’m I being terrible?

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I do think you have an obligation to advise the caretaker of this situation, ASAP. One of the private duty agencies I considered made it clear that guns on the premises needed to be secured. I had no problem with that.

But if the caretaker doesn't know, and something happens....especially with any level of dementia but most definitely if he's adamant that he wants the gun(s) available, you'd feel horrible.

You might want to consider asking the police for assistance, especially if there's concern that someone might be shot because of nighttime confusion.
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Reply to GardenArtist
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A person beyond the very early stage of dementia cannot safely live alone. This period may be extended somewhat by bringing in help, but eventually Dad cannot live alone. Are you and your brother thinking ahead to that time?

A person at ANY level of dementia must not have access to guns. There was a case in the news here of a father killing his son because he thought he was an intruder. This is just way too dangerous.

I don't know if the police or the sheriff's department can help with this, but I think I would start there.

I am so sorry you and your brother are in this very frustrating situation.
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Reply to jeannegibbs
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The gun has been removed! It took my Uncle telling him to just do it “or they will hound you about it”. It worked and now we all feel sooooo much better. Promised him a burger for Fathers Day! Lol
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Reply to BillsDaughter39
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We had a nice Father’s Day. I “let him” have a cheeseburger which means I’m “good” again. Lol.
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Reply to BillsDaughter39
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No the caretakers don’t know about the gun. I will be sure to inform them if we can’t get it this weekend. It would have been ideal if brother would have just taken the gun, but here we are now. I have considered overnight help but if I’m being completely honest he doesn’t NEED it. It just makes me feel better about him being in home alone. Nothing has happened, yet, to show he needs that level of care. I was hoping to avoid it having to happen but I think I am burning myself out trying to control his environment early.
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Reply to BillsDaughter39
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BillsDaughter
Be VERY careful that you don’t wear your brother and husband out. Listen to them. They are in this too. Your brother was right to remove the gun, just maybe not in the manner he chose. Will dad remember tomorrow that his son tried to remove the gun? Pace yourself. This is a long road.
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Reply to 97yroldmom
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Whoa Jackson
Your husband’s entire life is up for grabs with you caretaking your father! What do you mean you don’t ALLOW your husband. This is his life too!!
Forgive me, Bills Daughter, but you need to take a minute and reflect on that position.
On the other hand, this may have been a wake up call for you and brother that you can’t really expect dad to act rationally. He has dementia.
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Reply to 97yroldmom
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hi billsdaughter i'm sorry what you're going thru. having to deal with someone with dementia is almost like living in the twilight zone. don't expect your dad to agree because he just wont see things like you do. and if he ever agrees, he can turn around and disagree. depending on how bad his memory is.

I know its hard. realize its not your fault and something may happen even tho you are trying to keep him safe. he may decline slowly in his memory, but eventually it will get worse.
my dad was fine as long as he was left alone(as long as he wasn't bothered) but as soon as we asked his opinion ex: 1)sell his car, he wasn't driving. 2) cut down a tree, its needed 3)leave the yard sprinklers on, grass dying 4) close the windows, its HOT use the a/c. 5) going outside in the dark, & he can barely walk.

he wouldn't agree to common sense stuff. and his judgement was bad.

at a certain point you just cant listen to what they tell you anymore.

luckily for me, my mom and dad had a trust and will set up with an attorney
& was able to get them to both agree to sign off

still it doesn't get someone to "agree" to anything

my dad has passed away. but my mom has dementia pretty bad. she still thinks at times that she is able to do the same things she used to be able to do.
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Reply to wally003
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Thank you for sharing good news. Enjoy Father's Day!
This is the first year I will not have daddy on Father's Day,
he passed at Christmas. I had the car issue and the gun issue.
Very challenging. The home is empty now and being sold.
My life is calmer now, but I miss him so much.
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Reply to yogagirl
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My brother just talked about my dad giving up the gun and expressed his concern which my dad angrily responded to. Resulting in kicking him out and then yelling at me when I supported the need to remove the gun. He desperately doesnt want believe and/or doesn’t understand the risk. I don’t really allow my husband to take part in any caretaking though he does have to listen to me vent, see me crying and witness my high levels of stress. Husband thinks I “care too much” and need to let some things go-not the gun issue of course-but staying overnight at his house etc.
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